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Sky Architect - Excavations Of The Mind CD (album) cover

EXCAVATIONS OF THE MIND

Sky Architect

 

Heavy Prog

3.97 | 266 ratings

From Progarchives.com, the ultimate progressive rock music website

siLLy puPPy
4 stars Some Flower Kings inspired prog puts me right to sleep but i was pleasantly surprised by the outfit called SKY ARCHITECT from Rotterdam. They sound like the Dutch version of Haken but i actually think they have a more mature approach to their sound. EXCAVATIONS OF THE MIND is their debut release and it just scratches my prog itch in the most satisfying way. First of all it is very melodic which always takes the lead but the variations off of the melody are just so brilliantly laid out and catchy as hell. The first track on this album is an instantly addictive parade of themes and ideas that reminds me of the changes that take place on Mike Oldfield's "Tubular Bells." As with many bands of this type, it's usually the vocalist that forces me to make an attitude adjustment. That meaning i usually don't like them and have to adapt through several listens, but on this album i adore Tom Luchies' vox box upon first listen even though it is not the best there is to be in the prog rock universe.

While SKY ARCHITECT can certainly fit into the sea of "retro progressive rock," you know, the kind that wants to sample everything from the past creating a retro experience that will stroke every prog lover's longing for the past, this one is really above the parade of copycats that have exploded upon the prog universe in recent times. No doubt they can conjure up all the proper checking the boxes category that borrows from Crimson, Yes, Gentle Giant and especially the Flower Kings and Neil Morse territory replete with prog metal leanings that can remind of Dream Theater and Pain Of Salvation with healthy doses of Porcupine Tree and even Pink Floyd moments in the mix, but SKY ARCHITECT seems to make this less irritating and genuinely meld them into an interesting categorization of the influences and add more than enough originality to make this effort feel like a legit inventive production.

What it really boils down to with this one is the ability to hook me with catchy melodies and keep enough of a retro thing as not to alienate the listener but by adding all kinds of original and unexpected elements that stem from recognizable non-prog sources as well as many aforementioned bonafide prog sources. EXCAVATIONS OF THE MIND is quite the interesting album that despite not quite offering up the next masterpiece of the modern era, still offers a rewarding and above average take on the whole retro prog scene. Well worth a first listen and beyond. The debut album by SKY ARCHITECT has more than enough creative elements to invite me to explore their discography further.

siLLy puPPy | 4/5 |

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